Why Parmesan Cheese Is So Expensive?
If you like cheese you probably know about Parmigiano Reggiano or Parmesan Originally made by Benedictine and Cistercian monks a thousand years ago and it’s aged at least 12 months. Parmesan is known as the “King of Cheeses“.
Why real parmesan cheese is so special?
Parmesan wheels were made with only three ingredients cow milk salt and rennet. There are only 329 dairies in the whole world that are certified to produce parmesan cheese and they’re all based in the same area where the monks used to make it in fact it isn’t even possible to make the exact same product outside of the production area and why is that turns out it’s all about three good bacteria that only grow in this specific territory.
So why it’s so expensive?
The process of aging is one of the main reasons for the rich flavor and granular texture of Parmigiano Reggiano, which is aged longer than ordinary cheeses. Its taste is fruity/nutty and savory, with a slightly gritty texture and a pronounced savory taste.
A wheel of parmesan cheese can cost over a thousand dollars the average wheel weighs 88 pounds which means it costs over 11 dollars per pound that might not sound like a lot but it’s more than double the price of your average cheddar a wheel of parmesan cheese takes at least one year to age 131 gallons of milk It is only made in a small area of northern Italy.
Parmesan cheese is a big business
Parmesan cheese is a big business for Italy an average of 3.6 million wheels are produced each year and the industry is worth 2.2 billion euros that’s about 2.5 billion us dollars making this cheese one of Italy’s biggest exports every single cheese wheel is made in a restricted area in northern Italy in the region of Emilia Romagna its Italian name Parmigiano-Reggiano means from the cities of parma and red Emilia.
Why is some cheaper parmesan cheese available in the market?
Italy has been struggling with fake products for years the problem is so big that the fakes have become an industry of their own that is estimated to be worth a hundred billion euros, that’s about 113 billion us dollars with Parmigiano Reggiano being one of the biggest brands fighting copycats while the cheese is protected in the European Union under the protected designation of origin scheme is still struggling to get the recognition it deserves in the rest of the world.
How to check the real Parmigiano Reggiano
To ensure you’re buying authentic Parmigiano, look for the Consortium’s certification marks. Those wheels that pass the test are fire-branded with the DOP oval certification mark and stamped with ‘Parmigiano-Reggiano’ pin-dots all along the rind. When you buy a block of cheese, check the rind for the pin-dot markings.
Sliced with its crust, the original product is easily recognizable. The crust, or any part of it, must clearly show Parmigiano Reggiano dots. Real Parmigiano Reggiano is only made with milk, rennet, and salt; any other ingredients or preservatives are indications that it isn’t.
Some most populer dishes with parmigiano reggiano all around the world
- Pizzolo SORTINO, ITALY
- Machas a la parmesana, CHILE
- Toasted Ravioli, ST. LOUIS, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
- Fettuccine Alfredo, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Use of parmigiano reggiano
There are may use parmigiano reggiano aged at 24 months. you prefer it grated or flakes, use it with pasta, risotto, and soups. Parmigiano cheese that is between 15 and 18 months old go well with fresh fruit like pears, apples, grapes, and strawberries, as well as dry fruits. it is also can be use as an appetizer.
At The End
There are also some less expensive opation available for the Parmigiano like Grana Padano, also made in Emilia-Romagna and in other regions of Northern Italy. But it may slightly diffrent from distinct granular texture of Parmigiano.